Thursday, December 15, 2005

Martin stands firm on criticism of U.S. policy

You see the Power we have in Canada to speak our minds and be critical of other nations. We will not be Intimidated by the United States or her president. It is one thing to be a citizen of the U.S. and speak out against your own government, and now the C.I.A and the Military are collecting data on "Anti- U.S." demonstrations and groups as Terrorism threats in widely released reports as of late, so even American Citizens are not SAFE from the watchful and ever present BIG BROTHER Intimidation of the U.S. Government. WAKE UP BUSHY!! We will not be talked down to OR Dictated to by the men and women in the White House!!

Canadians are not afraid to speak out even to presidents and governments, if we do not think you are acting appropriately!! And the United States Government has abused relations with Canada all on its own.

The United States is NOT then end all be all of proper behaviour worldwide. You have failed to govern and act accordingly. Bush is a FOOL and should get out of the White House!

( Now the CTV news report )

A defiant Paul Martin, on the campaign trail in Richmond, B.C. stood firm on his criticism of U.S. policy, saying he would not "be dictated to as to the subjects that I should raise."

The prime minister said he will continue to defend Canadian interests on thorny issues such as softwood lumber and climate change, regardless of who is rankled by his rhetoric.

"I have been raising the softwood lumber issue ever since I became prime minister, I have been raising the climate change issue ever since I became prime minister," Martin said Wednesday.

"These issues pre-date the election campaign, but if those issues arise, then I will deal with them as they arise. And I am going to call it as I see it.

Martin was responding to comments made by U.S. Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins, who scolded the prime minister for his tough talk on U.S. policies.

"The softwood lumber dispute matters to the people of Canada, this dispute with the United States demands leadership at the national level in Canada -- even if that leadership happens to rankle some in the U.S.," Martin said on the campaign trail in BC

"The American ambassador is a man for whom I have a great deal of respect, but that does not change one vital fact -- when it comes to defending Canadian values, when it comes to standing up for Canadian interests -- I am going to call it like I see it," Martin said.

On Tuesday, in his pointed rebuke to campaigning politicians, but aimed principally at the Liberal leader, Wilkins warned them to tone down the anti American rhetoric.

"It may be smart election year politics to thump your chest and constantly criticize your friend and your No. 1 trading partner," the U.S. President George Bush's envoy to Canada said in a speech to the Canadian Club.

"But it is a slippery slope, and all of us should hope that it doesn't have a long term impact on the relationship."

Although he didn't mention Martin by name, he responded to the Liberal leader's remarks last week concerning America's refusal to become party to the Kyoto protocol aimed at curbing greenhouse gases.

Less than a week after Martin named the United States for failing to yield to a "global conscience" on climate change in its refusal to sign the Kyoto Protocol, Wilkins lobbed the phrasing back at the prime minister.

"The United States is, in fact, reducing emissions and spending more money on tackling climate change than any other country in the world, having spent over 20 billion dollars in the last five years," said Wilkins.

"I would respectfully submit to you that when it comes to a 'global conscience,' the United States is walking the walk," he added.

Meanwhile, Conservative Leader Stephen Harper, who is also campaigning in B.C. Wednesday, said it was inappropriate for Wilkins to level such criticism.

He said no foreign ambassador should be intervening in another country's election campaign.

During an interview broadcast on a Canadian radio station Wednesday, Wilkins said his statements weren't intended to affect the outcome of an election.

"That's obviously Canada's position and Canadians will make that decision in January. But what I am passionate about is … the relationship. I want to accentuate the positive," he said.

"I don't think anything good comes from tearing down each other."

When asked if a directive came from the White House for him to publicly reprimand the prime minister, the ambassador would only say he has thought of making a statement over a "series of days."

He added: "If you looked at my entire speech -- the majority of the speech was very positive."


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